Many people who struggle with addiction and mental health issues often have co-occurring disorders that need to be addressed. These co-occurring conditions can be treated through telehealth, or virtual or online treatment. Using telehealth can help to ensure that all facets of an individual’s recovery are supported.
As technology continues to improve, more options for support are becoming available, including online recovery meetings, forums or chat rooms and recovery apps. The addition of telehealth for addiction adds another dimension to these new options and helps to create an environment where it is even easier to follow through with treatment and continue to work toward a healthier lifestyle.
In a recent study, Mark and his team looked at eight studies and interviews with treatment providers and stakeholders to understand how telehealth for addiction works. They found that telehealth can be used for a variety of services in addiction treatment, with the most common being group counseling sessions and intensive outpatient programs. Less commonly used services include withdrawal management and intake assessments for methadone.
Many of the benefits of telehealth for addiction revolve around how it can help to reduce barriers to access care. Specifically, many patients who would otherwise miss appointments due to travel or expenses can now schedule sessions at a time and place that best fits their needs. This allows them to maintain a strong level of consistency and accountability in their recovery process. Additionally, simple text message reminders can also be used to help keep patients connected and motivated to attend therapy sessions.